Depression is rooted in the mind. It is very internal. It is all inside. The overwhelming sadness, loss of interest, hopelessness, difficulty in concentrating, and thoughts of suicide are inside. Nobody can see these thoughts. A person feels them strongly but unless you admit what is going on, everything you are feeling stays locked up in your head. That is a place that I consider safe because then nobody can say anything that might hurt me more.
I realized the other day though that depression can be external without admitting to anyone what is going on. They symptoms listed above can be dealt with externally which I realized is how I deal with the pain. I am able to hide the external expressions though. For example, I wear sunglasses quite often but not necessarily because of the sun. I wear the sunglasses to avoid eye contact. I do not want people to see the sadness and the tears that are welling up or the resentment I have towards this town. I also wear a jacket frequently. Though I really like the jacket, it also has another purpose: It covers up the cuts. I often use bandaids as well but when the cuts are on both wrists or do not look like cat scratches, I need to find other ways to hide them.
Ever week at church, there is praise singing before church. The choir members usually stand up front and lead in the songs. Today, I wore my jacket to hide the cuts. During the service, I desperately wanted to wear my sunglasses to hide the tears that were threatening.
Even my apartment shows how I am feeling. When I am feeling down, the dishes pile up. There is little to no food in the refrigerator. I do not have the energy to cook so I make something fast like grilled cheese or something out of a can. The laundry piles up and nothing gets put away. Everything is too overwhelming and I just cannot do it. This is all external depression that anyone can see but if they do not understand, it will probably go unnoticed, just like what is happening right now.
When depression becomes external, it becomes difficult to hide. I have to live a secret life so no one notices what is going on. I am not sure why I am hiding something serious. There should be no shame in what I am experiencing. However, there are always the people who do not understand the pain going on in the mind.